Speculation on the future of English (and other languages)

By Seraphinus, in 'Other Languages', Jun 29, 2017.

  1. NubusLatinae1770 Member

    Location:
    New York USA
    Unfortunately I only know how to read the calligraphy, and understand a little of biblical and liturgical hebrew, though in no way stand fit to advise. My wife is fluent in modern hebrew however, and learned Torah and Talmud in her schooling in the originals.
    Domine likes this.
  2. Domine Member

    Location:
    Claremont, CA.
    Latin was able to remain static due to the Roman Catholic Church -- quite frankly. The language was seen as a legal entity as well as a liturgical entity, thereby ensuring its survival to be static (Classical Latin). Every former Roman province developed its own Latin derived tongue -- with those in the far West (Iberian peninsula) as well as in Eastern Europe (Romania) ossifying themselves as well as incorporating new influences. It is said that modern-day English is roughly 30% Germanic derived yet English uses more Germanic derived words during basic conversations, basic questions, and basic statements. WHEREAS, the Latin/French derived words in modern-day English start to be more frequent when topics/answers are complex.

    I wasn't aware of that New York hybridization of Hebrew with English and Babylonian Aramaic. It sounds quite interesting to see the Jewish folk of that area immersing their language(s) in order to bridge a common ground among the different groups. Aramaic is very similar to Hebrew, very similar script as Hebrew.
  3. Etaoin Shrdlu Civis Illustris

    • Civis Illustris
    That's hardly likely to be the purpose of it.
  4. NubusLatinae1770 Member

    Location:
    New York USA
    I think the purpose, as I have observed it, is that English lacks certain technical terms to describe Talmudic law, thus the hybridization occurred to facilitate learning amongst insular groups.
    Domine likes this.
  5. NubusLatinae1770 Member

    Location:
    New York USA

    It's worth noting that Aramaic doesn't have a similar script to Hebrew, it's quite backwards actually, Hebrew obtained its script form from Babylonian Aramaic during the Babylonian Exile during the reign of King Nebuchadnezzar. It speaks of this in the Talmud of the two different Hebrew scripts used during specific periods, as the Katav Ivrie, or Jewish script. This was the Paleo-Hebrew script used before the exile, and is no longer written. Then you have the Katav Asheri, or the Assyrian script, used now as handed down by Babylonian Aramaic.

    Likewise worth noting that what people tend to think as Aramaic is usually the Babylonian form, which is present in the Targumim (Aramaic translations of the Hebrew Bible) and the Babylonian Talmud. Yet there are sundry variations and dialects of the language, many of which are extremely different than Hebrew. Another famous example is the Aramaic of Jesus, which is Palestinian Aramaic, also used in the writing of the lesser known Jerusalem Talmud.
    Last edited by NubusLatinae1770, Dec 13, 2017
  6. Domine Member

    Location:
    Claremont, CA.
    Very interesting. I always thought Hebrew used their own script, or that they used a script from a common ancestor with Aramaic. If only the Syrian government (and peoples of the Levant) knew this, they would allow Aramaic speakers of the region to use the Aramaic alphabet rather than an Arab-derived script. They Syrian government doesn't allow Aramaic speakers to use the Aramaic alphabet as it resembles Hebrew and it would be seen as an imposition by Israel.
  7. NubusLatinae1770 Member

    Location:
    New York USA
    That makes sense considering the political climate of the day. I wonder how long it has been since non-Jewish Aramaic dialects stopped using the original block script. I wouldn't be surprised if it was fairly early.
    Domine likes this.
  8. Pollux New Member

    If current trends continue, 90% of all languages are going to die out within the next 100 years, but most of them have only a few thousand speakers. The established ones will remain but it's likely they will include many influences from English, especially as loan words. Also, they may become simpler than they are today.

    It doesn't seem like English is going to loose it's position as global lingua franca any soon. But what is going to happen nobody can say for sure.
  9. However long it takes, I'd love to see people making memes about the Cambridge English Course, reciting "am, are, is, are, are, are" in class, and maybe complaining about the incomprehensible syntax of Trumpian graffiti
    Mafalda likes this.
  10. Iáson Cívis Illústris

    • Civis Illustris
    I wonder if Trump's tweets will be published along with a linguistic and historical commentary.

    The amusing thing will be people pronouncing English as if it were written phonetically... then Latin will have its revenge on all those people who pronounce Latin like English.
  11. Pacifica grammaticissima

    • Civis Illustris
    Location:
    Belgium
    Lol! It's possible, though.
    Iohannes Aurum and Iáson like this.
  12. Iohannes Aurum Technicus Auxiliarius

    • Technicus Auxiliarius
    There's one problem with that video:

    "i" should be pronounced like "ee" in English.

    This way, the vowels would be consistent with many continental European languages (and with older forms of English before the Great Vowel Shift).
  13. interprete Member

    This sounds rather counterintuitive to me, at least based on what I can see in French. Grammar rules become merged, spellings that used to be consistent with a given rule are replaced by mistaken ones which become the norm but are no longer based on the previous rules, hence are to be treated as « exceptions», and more generally, as grammar rules are applied less and less, more and more « exceptions» pop up which can't be explained by any consistent rule at all. I find this trait to be very blatant in modern English (as opposed to modern French for example, although this is starting to change) and this is why English grammar and spelling are so hard to acquire.
    Usually what looks simple on the surface hides a sea of complications due to the absence of a clear rule that would help make sense of the established usage.
  14. Imperfacundus Reprobatissimus

    • Civis Illustris
    Define "simpler".
  15. Imperfacundus Reprobatissimus

    • Civis Illustris
    They probably can be, but not on the layman's level.
  16. Iáson Cívis Illústris

    • Civis Illustris
    Spelling, certainly, almost universally gets more 'complex' (ie irregular) over time: whilst languages constantly change, spelling is generally conservative, reflecting pronunciations that are no longer the case.
  17. interprete Member

    What do you mean exactly?
    I precisely see this at the layman's level in everyday French speech. Liberties in speech that become « normal » to the French speaker although they contradict the rule, and there you go: one more « exception » to said rule.
  18. Imperfacundus Reprobatissimus

    • Civis Illustris
    As in, the reasons for the new developments often wouldn't occur to the average layman.

    Languages are constantly changing, and that's never not been the case- not in France, not in Europe, not anywhere.

    Being French, you're predisposed to see your own language as easier, more logical, etc. and a foreign one like English as bewildering in its details. Ask the average anglophone learner of French and you'll get the same perspective in reverse.
  19. Pacifica grammaticissima

    • Civis Illustris
    Location:
    Belgium
    It was the reverse with me. When I learned the basics of English, I was astonished at how simple it was and I thought "What a hassle it must be for an English-speaker to learn French! I'm glad I'm a French-speaker learning English and not the other way round!"

    Now, of course, part of that feeling may have been due to a lack of awareness of the finer points, but still.
  20. Imperfacundus Reprobatissimus

    • Civis Illustris
    See, it even varies from person to person. Although I'm tempted to count you as an exception since you have a talent for language.

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